Work has recently commenced on a key rural village regeneration programme designed to improve the visual appearance of targeted village and town centres within the Derry City and Strabane District Council District Area.
The scheme will focus on eight village and town centre settlements comprising mainly of the painting of the facades of commercial properties located within the defined target areas.
The scheme is supported by the COVID Recovery Small Settlements Programme, a collaboration between the Department for Communities (DfC), Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs (DAERA), and the Department for Infrastructure (DfI) working closely with local Councils to identify priority projects for delivery on the ground.
The programme aims to support a range of regeneration and active travel interventions targeting small settlements with a population of less than 5,000 people that will attract investors and visitors, and create vital and viable towns that meet the needs of local citizens and the surrounding areas.
Out of the c. £2m funding secured by Council from the Programme, £1m has been allocated towards the commercial façade painting scheme and associated environmental improvements within the eight settlements, with the remaining budget committed to green infrastructure/active travel projects in Claudy, Newtownstewart and Park.
The commercial façade painting scheme is the culmination of work carried out by Council over the past year in the identification of properties, technical surveys, engagement with business and property owners and the appointment of contractors to undertake the works.
Welcoming the commencement of the first phase of works in Castlederg and Claudy, Mayor of Derry and Strabane, Councillor Patrica Logue, said she was delighted to see work begin on this important regeneration project to improve the visual appearance and character of the identified village and town centres within our District.
“The Covid Recovery Small Settlements Programme represents an important initiative in targeting investment into our rural settlements to assist local businesses who play a key role in the economic vitality and viability of the rural area.
“It is hoped that not only will the targeted properties and village/town centres benefit from the physical enhancements, but also through increase in footfall and activity.
“This project represents a key collaborative rural regeneration initiative between Council and the respective Central Government Departments, and I would like to acknowledge the collective input all involved,” she added.
Supported by DAERA, DfC and DfI, a spokesperson for the three departments said: “It’s great to see the commencement of this Revitalisation programme which will breathe new life into towns and villages across the Council area.
“These schemes will boost the local economy, help tackle rural poverty and improve access to services in small settlements.”
The painting works will be delivered over two separate contracts for Derg District Electoral Area (Castlederg, Newtownstewart & Sion Mills) and the Sperrin/Faughan District Electoral Area (Ballymagorry, Claudy, Donemana, Eglinton & Plumbridge).
The works programme is estimated to be delivered over the next 6-months with the first phase of works for each DEA having already commenced in Castlederg and Claudy.
Following the completion of the current phase, the contractors will move onto the remaining settlements within each of the DEAs.Tags: